After months of being pent up indoors, we can go out into our parks again. In the most recent update, officials announced that some Alberta parks will reopen pretty much right away. The rest will come soon, as they're some of the first things being reopened in their strategy.
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney announced in his press conference on Thursday, April 30, that the province will start the long process of reopening soon.
But although it may take until Thursday, May 14, or later for restaurants and retail shops to open up, outdoor activities are getting a head start.
"Vehicle access will be once again allowed in some of our provincial parks as early as this weekend, and some boat launches will also be opened this Friday — tomorrow."
Earlier, cars were barred from trails and grounds in Alberta's provincial parks to stop people from visiting. What's more, several parks were fully shut down earlier to save money.
In terms of private and municipal parks, Kenney said they can "also open, as long as appropriate physical distancing restrictions are in place."
If you've been missing camping, you'll be able to get your fill of that soon too. Kenney said their online campground reservation system will be coming back online for bookings starting Thursday, May 14.
"Campsites will be gradually made available, although spaces will be limited to allow for appropriate distancing," said Kenney.
However, when it comes to "large group camping, shared cooking areas, and programming," these are still off the table "for the foreseeable future," Kenney continued.
Golf courses in the province will also be reopened "as early as this weekend, weather and conditions permitting. However, clubhouses and pro shops will remain closed until stage one when other retail stores are able to open."
The province may enter "stage one", said Kenney, as early as Thursday, May 14.
Given how beautiful the province's parks are, this is a great opportunity to take a road trip — just remember to sanitize your hands and practice physical distancing.
"I would remind outdoor enthusiasts that while there are no off-highway vehicle restrictions currently in place, we ask people to be responsible," said Kenney. "We'll be monitoring closely should the risk for wildfires increase."